Vermont Legal Aid is advocating for an increase in Reach Up cash assistance to low-income Vermont families. Reach Up’s statutory purpose is to “improve the wellbeing of children by providing for their immediate basic needs,” but the program fails to achieve its purpose. Cash grants are so low — as attorney Jessica Radbord and her client Sandra Cross demonstrate in this budget exercise — that Vermont kids on the program are constantly at risk of hunger, homelessness and deprivation. Contact your legislator today to let them know that you support investing in Vermont kids by investing in Reach Up.
Yesterday’s verdict did not bring justice for all the Black and Brown lives that have been lost due to police violence and systemic racism. However, it is cause for hope that, thanks to the courage of the Floyd family, the fortitude of the jurors, the skill and dedication of the team of attorneys assembled by Attorney General Ellison, and the persistence of all those who have raised their voices in protest in the streets, we may have taken a first step toward greater accountability in our policing practices, and that we can through continued efforts, in the words of Amanda Gorman, “rebuild, reconcile and recover.” With this hope in mind, we at Vermont Legal Aid re-dedicate ourselves today to calling out racism when we see it — in our country, in our state, and in our own organization— and to dismantling white supremacy in Vermont.